CHAMPCAR/CART: Marlboro Team Penske pit notes 2000-08-08

MARLBORO TEAM PENSKE ENJOYS A RARE WEEKEND OFF This weekend gave Marlboro Team Penske some welcome time off from their hectic summer schedule – six races in the past seven weeks combined with tests at Michigan, Chicago and Elkhart Lake....

MARLBORO TEAM PENSKE ENJOYS A RARE WEEKEND OFF

This weekend gave Marlboro Team Penske some welcome time off from their hectic summer schedule – six races in the past seven weeks combined with tests at Michigan, Chicago and Elkhart Lake. With so much time spent on the road, both Gil de Ferran and Helio Castroneves like to take their free time and spend it relaxing with friends and family at home while maintaining their on-going fitness routine.

The busy travel schedule coupled with the physical toll of racing and testing makes it imperative that today's driver stay in top physical condition. With two more races added for the 2001 season the need to stay fit will be even more important.

When driving their 2000 Marlboro Honda Reynards, de Ferran and Castroneves subject their bodies to extreme stress so training is vital to their success. Some of the physical extremes to which drivers are exposed include:

o In a typical race, the driver's heart rate reaches 85 - 95% of its maximum capacity, which is comparable to a marathon runner, long distance swimmer and professional singles tennis player.

o The G-Forces sustained during a normal race in the cockpit is about 5.5 lateral G's during turns and while braking and accelerating G's reach between 4.5 to 6; this is similar to having a 17 pound weight attached to your head.

Gil de Ferran trains several days a week both during the season and off-season. He prefers to train alone by doing mostly aerobics, jogging, swimming, cycling and limited weight training. While de Ferran trains alone, Helio Castroneves has been training with a professional trainer since 1992. He works out six days a week concentrating on weight training, jogging and circuit training.

DE FERRAN ON THE IMPORTANCE OF TRAINING

"Driving requires great strength and good cardiovascular ability. It is similar to what jet pilots experience, only that we experience it in every direction – when we brake, when we accelerate and when we make turns. And throughout that you have to keep yourself reasonably steady and keep breathing continuously."

CASTRONEVES ON THE IMPORTANCE OF STAYING FIT

"In addition to training, my diet always plays a large role in my level of fitness. I don't eat red meat or drink soft drinks, but I make sure I make up for the lost nutritional value in red meat. For me not eating red meat is normal, I don't feel like I'm missing anything."

ROGER PENSKE AT THE BRICKYARD

While the drivers were at home, Roger Penske, who rarely takes a weekend off, was at the Brickyard with his Penske Racing South Team. Penske driver Rusty Wallace, driving the #2 Miller Lite Ford Taurus, finished second after starting tenth and leading 110 of 160 laps.

MARLBORO TEAM PENSKE GEARS UP FOR FOUR STRAIGHT ROAD/STREET COURSE EVENTS

Over the next month, CART will race on four different road courses - three permanent road courses and one temporary street circuit - across North America. They will visit the Midwest when they travel from Lexington, OH, to Elkhart Lake, WI and then head to the West Coast to race in Vancouver, British Columbia and Monterey, CA. The Team is looking forward to the road/street courses as they have had good results so far this season on these types of circuits.

MARLBORO TEAM PENSKE ON ROAD/STREET COURSES

o In the 2000 season, Marlboro Team Penske has two victories (Detroit - Castroneves; Portland – de Ferran), three poles (Portland, Toronto - Castroneves; Long Beach - de Ferran), and one second place finish (Long Beach - Castroneves) on road/street courses.

o Marlboro Team Penske has had a car on the front row in four of the five road/street courses this season including sweeping the entire front row in Portland.

o De Ferran's average road/street course starting position is 3.4 and his average finishing position is 7.4. Castroneves' average road/street course starting position is 4.8 and his average finishing position is 9.4.

o Both de Ferran and Castroneves have scored points in four of the five road/street course races run this season - Castroneves has scored 45 points and de Ferran has scored 40.

o Marlboro Team Penske has led eight times for 164 of the 490 laps run (33%) on road/street courses this season.

DRIVE AWAY HUNGER PROGRAM IN MID-OHIO

The Drive Away Hunger Program donates leftover food from race weekend to local charities in each city where CART races. This weekend the Drive Away Hunger Program headed up by Marlboro Team Penske and Newman Haas Racing will benefit the Salvation Army and Harmony House in Mansfield, OH. For more information, please contact Katherine Bennett at 310-274-7800.

<pre> FEDEX CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES POINTS UPDATE

1.   Michael Andretti           120
2.   Roberto Moreno             98
3.   Gil de Ferran              89
4.   Cristiano da Matta         82
5.   Paul Tracy                 80
6.   Adrian Fernandez           79
7.   Kenny Brack                78
8.   Juan Montoya               77
9.   Jimmy Vasser               68
10.  Patrick Carpentier         65
11.  Dario Franchitti           58
12.  Helio Castroneves          56
13.  Max Papis                  56

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